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(Thomas, 1840-1928, Novelist & Poet)
Fine Autograph Letter Signed to
(died 1925, founder and first secretary of the Society of Dorset Men) saying that he is "glad that, as I hinted in my last note might be advisable, the reading of my paper was put off. It is better suited to a meeting than a dinner, moreover, in spite of the compliment you paid it (as I gather from the D.C.C.) it was really written at a scrambling pace ..." and saying that he would like to have it a "week before you typewrite it, to add & modify a few remarks. There will be plenty of time for me to do this before the autumn...", 2 sides 8vo., Max Gate headed paper, 14th May
William Watkins was a Dorset born businessman and founder and first secretary of the Society of Dorset Men in London. Hardy was president of the Society in 1907-9 and prepared an address 'Dorset in London' for the annual dinner on 11th May 1908, but, despite Watkin's opinion that it was a 'marvellous piece of writing', and for the reasons Hardy gives in this letter, it was not actually delivered. It was printed in the Society's yearbook for 1908-9. The Society's emblem on the Coat of Arms is a silver tower and the motto of the Society "Who's afeard", was chosen by Thomas Hardy.
Collected Letter VII, p. 146.
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